Tales & Traditions: Holland Dairy - Highfill, AR
It's been a while since there has been a #talesandtraditions posts. I was busy working on this new website and then I went on vacation, sorry not sorry, ya'll.
My third farm visit, as they all are, was very near and dear to my heart. The Holland's are GREAT family friends and it was an honor to spend a day with them learning about their operation.
Take a brief look into the Holland Dairy here--
“I bought 94 acres from my dad in 1980. My dad had bought that from my grandpa in the ‘40s. My dad was born in 1921 in the house my son Gene lives in now. This land has been in our family since the early 1900s,” said Gary Holland.
What initially began as a herd of 35 cows in 1980 has grown to be a herd with over 100 cows and 200 calves. With Gary tending to the cows, and wife Melissa managing their calf crop.
“It’s great working with Melissa every day. I couldn’t imagine doing it without her. After a few years, the start of a dairy is all about the person who raises the calves. Dad used to commend her a lot because I didn’t do a good job with the calves and she does,” admitted Holland.
Gary believes that farming is a long, hard job with little income but if you truly have the heart you can survive.
“You pour your heart and soul into your farm,” said Holland.
Whereas Gary was born into a farming family, he understands that everyone isn’t suited for a lifestyle full of early morning, late nights and continuous hard work.
“Farming isn’t for everyone. I’ve done it my whole life, Melissa has only been around it for the last 14 years but she loves it as much as I do,” said Holland.
While farming may not be for everyone, Melissa took to the job like a moth takes to a flame.
“Your average person can’t walk into the barn and know what is going on. I’ve been doing this for 14 years and I raised calves when I was a kid but I’m still learning something every day,” explained Melissa.
Melissa admits that she can’t imagine farming every day and not enjoying it like she does.
“It’s not a job, it’s your way of life. It’s pretty close to your heart. It’s a family thing because you’re always together,” said Melissa.
Read the full story and see ALL of the never before seen photos in my upcoming book 'Tales and Traditions: the Steadfast Faces of Agriculture.' Details on the release date and how to purchase will be announced as soon as possible.
Be on the look out for more excerpts and photos coming soon!
Love and hugs,